Trooping the Colour rehearsals continue with the Major General Major General Christopher John Ghika CBE Review credit MOD.jpg
Trooping the Colour will be held on 17 June 2023 (Picture: MOD).
King Charles

How will Trooping the Colour differ for the King's first birthday parade?

Trooping the Colour rehearsals continue with the Major General Major General Christopher John Ghika CBE Review credit MOD.jpg
Trooping the Colour will be held on 17 June 2023 (Picture: MOD).

Trooping the Colour is the biggest highlight in the British military's ceremonial calendar, but with this year marking King Charles' first as sovereign, how will the parade differ?

The event is a ceremonial celebration of the current British monarch's birthday, also known as the King's Birthday Parade, and takes place at Horse Guards Parade in London.

As part of the Army's modernisation programme, 'Future Soldier', this year will see all five regiments of Foot Guards of the Household Division in attendance for the first time in more than 30 years and will include more than 1,400 soldiers, 200 horses, and 400 musicians.

Another first for this year's military spectacle will be the addition of the 1st Battalion London Guards, who are the Foot Guards' reserve unit, and who will be responsible for lining the processional route along The Mall.

trooping the colour map credit british army.jpg
To find the best place to spot all of the action, the British Army has provided a map of public vantage points, indicated on the map with black dotted lines (Picture: MOD).

Prior to this year's King's Birthday Parade, His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales will attend an identical Trooping the Colour review and rehearsal on 10 June, the weekend before the main event, which is set to be held on Saturday 17 June.

This year, it is the turn of the 1st Battalion Welsh Guards to 'troop their colour'. A different regimental colour (flag) is trooped each year and members of the five Foot Guards regiments take it in turns to lead the parade each year.

According to the Household Division's website: "During the ceremony, the King is greeted by a Royal salute and carries out an inspection of the troops. After the massed bands have performed a musical 'troop', the escorted Regimental Colour is carried down the ranks."

It goes on to say that the troops will then return to barracks before His Majesty then joins other members of the Royal Family on the palace balcony for a flypast by the Royal Air Force's Red Arrows display team.

Watch: Complete guide to the coronation uniforms of the Household Division.

The Household Division forms part of the British Army's London District and is made up of five regiments of foot guards and the Household Cavalry.  

With the many different military uniforms on display, to the untrained eye, it can be hard to tell them apart, so Forces News has put together a handy guide so you can easily identify the different regiments on parade.

How to watch Trooping the Colour?

Members of the public can watch from the stands on Horse Guards Parade by applying for tickets.

Alternatively, a limited view can be obtained by standing on The Mall or on the edge of St James's Park overlooking Horse Guards (the view may be somewhat obscured by troops in this position) from 09:00 BST. These public vantage points are indicated on the map above with black dotted lines.

The Parade begins at Horse Guards at 10:00 and will finish by 12:25.

The ceremony will also be televised on BBC1 and broadcast to many other countries around the world.

Watch: Soldiers rehearse for Trooping the Colour.

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